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September 26, 2003

You Can’t Buy Publicity this Bad

The Boston Globe reports that the RIAA has dropped its lawsuit against Sarah Seabury Ward, a 66 year old sculptress whom they had accused of sharing 2000 songs on Kazaa. Trouble was that:

  1. She’s a self-professed computer neophyte, who’d never installed any file-sharing software on her computer.
  2. She seems a rather unlikely aficionado of gangsta rap (among the music she was specifically accused of having traded).
  3. Her computer is a Macintosh. So, even if she knew how, and even if she’d wanted to, she couldn’t have shared those songs on Kazaa, which is Windows-only.

You’d think that, after such an obvious screw-up, the RIAA would be gracious, apologize to Mrs. Ward, offer to pay her legal expenses, and give her a gift-certificate to Tower Records. You’d think that, but you’d be wrong.

“Please note, however, that we will continue our review of the issues you raised and we reserve the right to refile the complaint against Mrs. Ward if and when circumstances warrant.”

was what their Law Firm wrote to her lawyer, in agreeing to drop their suit.

One of the signs of Depression is that the individual no longer cares about “keeping up appearances.” The RIAA’s rhetoric may still be that of an aggrieved party seeking redress for injuries sustained. Their body language say differently.

Posted by distler at September 26, 2003 8:15 AM

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Re: You Can’t Buy Publicity this Bad

While I think that Kazaa’s recent suing of the RIAA is a bit like throwing stones in a glass house, I hope they win; simply because it might discourage the RIAA from suing people like this (especially when they have no clear evidence).

Posted by: Gary F on September 26, 2003 5:44 PM | Permalink | Reply to this

Re: You Can’t Buy Publicity this Bad

Such a lovely, accurate article in the Daily Texan about RIAA’s latest ploys here. The amnesty program they mention as a good thing is one that gives me the laughs.

Mmm, student staff.

Posted by: Mark Miller on November 5, 2003 1:45 AM | Permalink | Reply to this

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